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— Automotive

Volvo dives into modular future with SPA

Many of the world's car manufacturers have decided that flexible, modular platforms are the way of the future. Volkswagen's MQB underpins everything from the VW Golf to Audi's TT coupe, and there are more MQB-based cars to come. Volvo is keen to get in on the action with its Scalable Product Architecture (SPA), which will debut in the upcoming XC90 SUV and then extend across the Swedish manufacturer's range. Read More
— Electronics

Modular, waterproof 1,000-lumen ZeroHour flashlight doubles as portable battery

According to its creators, not only can the ZeroHour XD tactical flashlight blast 1,000 lumens of light into the evening darkness for up to six hours, it can charge an iPhone seven times (though it won't do both on the same charge). The flashlight includes a removable, 10,200-mAh battery pack that doubles as a dual-USB charger and features a modular design that allows the size of the device to be altered depending on the need at hand. Read More
— Outdoors

Corran Hydra take-apart paddleboard rides to the lake in your Lambo

Many a would-be paddleboarder is dissuaded from ever getting onto the water by the heavy, enormous size of the boards, which typically measure 9.5 to 12.5 feet (2.9 to 3.8 m) in length. This bulk makes the paddleboard difficult to transport and store, especially when dealing with the small cars, public transportation and tight apartments of city living. To help get more boarders on the water, Corran Addison Paddleboards has developed a three-piece board that packs into a roller case for easy transport and storage. Read More
— Around The Home

Sofista modular sofa changes form based on the needs of a room

Anyone who has found themselves living in a studio, or any kind of small place, has probably been faced with furniture issues. How does one have enough seating for friends, while actually have floor space to walk around? For many, modular furniture is a great answer, as it has a smaller footprint in one state, but can be expanded for additional seating in another. That's just what the Fabrizio Simonetti designed Sofista does. Read More
— Marine

C-Bird VSAT keeps sailors connected with home

Even as engineers work on autonomous ship-handling technologies, skilled and experienced crews are still vital for keeping shipping lines operating. The only snag is that most sailors today have become so used to never being out of touch that they've come to expect similar connectivity while at sea. To help maintain morale and retain skilled crews, Maritime Broadband has developed its C-Bird Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) satellite transceiver to keep sailors connected with their families and the internet. Read More
— Architecture

Casa Futebol concept would turn World Cup Stadiums into low-cost housing

Brazil spent around US$4 billion renovating and constructing its stadiums for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. But with the excitement of hosting the globe's biggest sporting event now having passed, one awkward, but important question remains. What to do with all that infrastructure? Drawing inspiration from the social issues plaguing much of the publicity around the event, a pair of French architects have developed a proposal to re-invent the structures as complexes for low-cost housing. Read More
— Outdoors

Teal shrinks its modular camper into a barebones $2500 car/motorcycle trailer

The Teal Tail Feather camper offers a mix of versatility and affordability that few competitors can match. Still, Teal hasn't stopped innovating and dropping prices just yet. The company has just launched a small, pop-top camper kit with a price of US$2,500. Like the original Tail Feather, the Tail Feather MINI 8.4 is a modular camper that assembles inside a standard utility trailer. Read More
— Motorcycles

Ariel Ace: The massively configurable motorcycle platform

Ariel, maker of the wild Atom sportscar, has just announced the Ace, a fully configurable motorcycle system based around a gorgeous billet frame and the Honda VFR1200 engine. It looks absolutely stunning, and it can be specified as anything from a cruiser, to a nakedbike, to a fully faired supersports machine – and altered endlessly after purchase. A fascinating concept, and the execution looks peerless. Read More
— Military

Robotic Weapon System gives helicopters hidden firepower

When we hear about military robots, it usually evokes images of Terminator-like killing machines, but it can also mean robotic systems designed to help soldiers concentrate on the job at hand. Case in point is Israel-based Duke Airborne Systems’ Robotic Weapon System (RWS). Unveiled at the Eurosatory defense industry show in Paris, the system billed as a “first-of-its-kind” is a concealable robotic gunnery module that allows utility helicopters to fly into hostile territory without an armed escort. Read More